Thursday, October 12, 2023

Mayor stresses progress in State of the City

Michael Londeau
Westland Mayor Michael P. Londeau used his first State of the City address to honor three residents for their outstanding commitment to improving the quality of life in the city.

Londeau honored former Mayor William R. Wild for his past work as the leader of the city and his continued involvement in community efforts. He also recognized the dedication and accomplishments of City Clerk Richard LeBlanc and the work of Senior Resources Director Barbara Marcum, noting that each of them has contributed greatly to the improvement of the community.

More than 350 individuals attended the address at the Senior Friendship Center last week and applauded the community honorees. 

Londeau spoke to the crowd reminding them of the accomplishments in the city during the past year. He noted the approval of the balanced 3-year budget that preserves a “rainy day” fund balance of nearly $6.5 million with no tax increases and the saving of millions of dollars in pension fund contributions with the receipt of a grant in the amount of $26 million from the State of Michigan Department of Treasury.

In addition, Londeau reminded the audience of the upgrades to the police station and fleet of vehicles and the addition of firefighters to the department. He said a $5.7 million SAFER grant would fund the increased department with no matching funds from the city.

The launch of the Neighborhood Makeover 2.0 Program which invested $5 million in replacement of deficient and hazardous sidewalks, at no additional cost to homeowners was also lauded by Londeau. He noted that the Neighborhood Makeover Program also includes the launch of a pilot speed bump program to confront the rise of dangerous driving in city neighborhoods.

The popular leaf-pickup program was revived in the community at no additional cost to residents, he said, along with the creation of the first emergency response team, as well as a Citizen Emergency Response Team to assist when the city encounters power outages, floods, and any other emergency. 

Londeau noted the reopening of the pond in Central City Park, with a brand new walking path for residents and the opening of the Mission to Mars playscape at Central City Park, a finalist for the coveted Michigan Municipal League Community Excellence Award. 

He reminded the audience of the acceleration of the Commercial Revitalization Program to demolish long blighted properties and encourage new development at those sites and the creation of a public green space and catalyst for redevelopment in the “Annex at Nankin,” located  next to the Westland Shopping Center. That space is set to open next spring he told the assembled crowd.

“As you can see, we've been taking care of business,” Londeau said in closing. “But…you ain't seen nothing yet!'” 

For more information about any of the programs, call (734) 467-3200.